November 14, 2008

AMD to Release Free Software

Sunnyvale, Calif. - AMD announced that starting next month, the company plans to release for download a free ATICatalyst driver update that instantly unlocks new ATI Stream acceleration capabilities already built into millions of ATI Radeon graphics cards.
ATI Stream is a set of advanced hardware and software technologies that enable AMD graphics processors (GPU), working in conjunction with the system's central processor (CPU), to accelerate applications beyond graphics. It results in balanced platforms capable of running demanding computing tasks fast.
ATI Stream-enabled software titles for entertainment, gaming, and productivity are being released or are under development by a growing list of independent software vendors (ISVs), including ArcSoft and CyberLink. To give users immediate benefit from ATI Stream, AMD also plans to release in December a free downloadable version of its ATI Avivo Video Converter utility. This intuitive, easy-to-use application enables transcoding of HD video up to 17 times faster than with the CPU alone, in tests performed using an ATI Radeon HD 4850 graphics card. 
ATI Radeon graphics processors from AMD each run the ATI Catalyst software driver. In the past 12 months, the various ATI Catalyst driver packages have been downloaded 48 million times, averaging nearly four million downloads each month.        
The next ATI Catalyst release is version 8.12. AMD has begun distributing a beta version to its hardware and software technology partners for testing, with the final version scheduled to be released for download on or around December 10.
Once installed, the driver package automatically turns on the ATI Stream acceleration capabilities within ATI Radeon HD 4000 series graphics cards. This will have the immediate effect of allowing any ATI Stream-enabled application to run faster, with no special effort required by consumers to enable this technology. Expert users will have the ability to customize their ATI Catalyst driver install options.
Users can then download and install the free ATI Avivo Video Converter. In tests performed using this utility, AMD was able to convert an hour of video to a portable player format in about 12 minutes.